Doing Something During Quarantine – Day 4

To do: Write about my most memorable travel experience.

What I will need: Memory that's good enough to remember the memory that I want to write about

I went on a solo trip during my birthday in 2019. The first time I was doing something like this. I decided to go to Manali in Himachal Pradesh, a state in the northern part of India. I live in the southern part of the country. The place is a major tourist attraction known for its scenic beauty. I chose this place on purpose, because I really wanted to "unwind" and do some "soul searching." Cliched terms associated with traveling, no?

I would be lying if I said I was not scared by the idea of traveling alone. I am the youngest of five children. If you are thinking that I was more pampered and over protected than all my siblings, you are partly right. This is one of the reasons why I was scared to go on the trip alone. But I did well in containing my fear and not showing it off to my parents. Had they known; the trip would have been a no go!

Another reason I was scared was because of the safety aspect of it. You know how it goes. You hear accounts and you think you might become the next victim. I thought that way, too. However, I stuck to my plan (I did my checks and made sure I would be safe.) because I felt like this trip would help me build a different sort of confidence.

On my birthday, my tour guide and driver took me to a valley. He dropped me off at the site and asked me to spend as much time as I wanted there. I walked to the site from the parking lot and I was blown away by the beauty around me! I chose to sit on a rock that was on an elevated part of the area. It felt strange to be alone on my birthday in an unknown place. But, I could not dwell on that thought for too long because there was so much happening around me: people paragliding and birds naturally gliding.

What caught my attention the most were the mountains in the distance. Whenever I see mountains, I am filled with a feeling I cannot describe. It seems like they are always maintaining distance from us. You can never go close enough and if you do manage to, you cannot see them fully but only in part.

I think I envy the mountains. They look like they are content with everything and unfazed by nothing. They are always standing tall no matter rain or shine, night or day. They do not fear lightning or thunder or the darkness that they nestle in during the night. They live through it all looking just as beautiful and magnificent! I want to be like them.

This has been my most memorable travel experience so far when I sat and looked at the mountains for a long time and tried to figure out what it was that I was feeling inside me. I could not.

Maybe it is best that I do not know what I feel when I see the mountains or rather I cannot name what I feel. I do not want to name it; I like it this way. What if I know what the feeling is and then it disappears and the next time I see the mountains I feel nothing?

P.S. On this trip, I also saw, felt, and touched snow for the first time in my life. That needs a different post of its own.

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